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Thu Oct 15, 2020, 12:31 PM

OUR NEW MACHINES USE PAPER!!!!

I am ecstatic!!!

I didn't know our new voting machines print paper ballots to scan! Granted our little county doesn't matter much but it's a HUGE relief to have an auditable paper trail!

It's not perfect. To improve it the ballot should have a detachable part with a unique id printed on it that matches the ballot. Then voters could confirm their ballots are correctly counted and/or not lost.


EVERY voter should be able to vote like this.

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Arrow 32 replies Author Time Post
Reply OUR NEW MACHINES USE PAPER!!!! (Original post)
HelpImSurrounded Oct 2020 OP
Grasswire2 Oct 2020 #1
HelpImSurrounded Oct 2020 #2
LiberalArkie Oct 2020 #3
Grasswire2 Oct 2020 #9
LiberalArkie Oct 2020 #17
LiberalArkie Oct 2020 #4
targetpractice Oct 2020 #7
Grasswire2 Oct 2020 #8
targetpractice Oct 2020 #11
bearsfootball516 Oct 2020 #5
Grasswire2 Oct 2020 #10
bearsfootball516 Oct 2020 #12
Grasswire2 Oct 2020 #15
HelpImSurrounded Oct 2020 #18
bearsfootball516 Oct 2020 #20
HelpImSurrounded Oct 2020 #21
bearsfootball516 Oct 2020 #22
Celerity Oct 2020 #23
HelpImSurrounded Oct 2020 #25
diva77 Oct 2020 #14
empedocles Oct 2020 #6
diva77 Oct 2020 #13
Grasswire2 Oct 2020 #16
HelpImSurrounded Oct 2020 #19
diva77 Oct 2020 #30
HelpImSurrounded Oct 2020 #31
diva77 Oct 2020 #32
Celerity Oct 2020 #24
diva77 Oct 2020 #28
Celerity Oct 2020 #29
Ilsa Oct 2020 #26
Rice4VP Oct 2020 #27

Response to HelpImSurrounded (Original post)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 12:35 PM

1. can you verify your vote?

Or is it a bar code?

The gold standard:

Paper ballot, hand marked, VOTER VERIFIABLE. Strong ballot security, strong audit trail. NO wifi transmission, NO optical scan, NO modems.

Those are the must-haves.

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Response to Grasswire2 (Reply #1)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 12:39 PM

2. Yes- verifiable!

Not the gold standard. Ballot is fed back into scanner, was so excited I didn't analyze if there were machine readable codes alongside the human readable text.

Our old machines were completely unauditable so I'm just excited by the improvement.

It's created a real opening to discuss how we get to that gold standard.

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Response to Grasswire2 (Reply #1)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 12:41 PM

3. The new ones we have have all that.

you can read what you what you voted for on the machines printed card. The card has bar codes to track it back to what machine actually printed it. (in case there is a problem with it). That card is then inserted into a reader to put your card (vote) into the system.

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Response to LiberalArkie (Reply #3)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 12:55 PM

9. a hackable system.

A system that likely uses wifi transmission over a modem to get the tallies to central.

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Response to Grasswire2 (Reply #9)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 02:18 PM

17. From the actual human interface (what people would call voting machine) there is only

AC power. The clerk gives the voter a card that is configured when you come in with the items you will be voting on. The voter takes it to the human interface and sticks the card in. The voters options come up. when you are complete and verified that you are complete, the machine will print all your voting choices on the card.

The voter can check it at that point. I assume if there was a mistake, the voter can go back and get another card. But in any case, no vote is posted until the voter inserts the card into the tabulator. At this point is where fraud could take place.

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Response to Grasswire2 (Reply #1)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 12:45 PM

4. The question becomes - If a recount id ordered, are the cards just inserted back into the reader

which could give the same fraudulent total, or are that totaled by hand with human eyes and hands which would not.

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Response to Grasswire2 (Reply #1)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 12:46 PM

7. No optical scan? Why?

Without that... It would be just a hand count. Which I would fully support, BTW. Yet optical scan-able ballots can be verified, audited, and leave a paper trail.


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Response to targetpractice (Reply #7)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 12:52 PM

8. I'm tellin' ya what the most solid experts on election say.

And that's one of the criteria.

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Response to Grasswire2 (Reply #8)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 01:07 PM

11. Gotcha... I think most experts would also say...

Hand marked, hand counted, and hand tabulated ballots are the best method... And that worked perfectly fine for a few hundred years in the U.S. and elsewhere.

The technology doesn't really help in this situation.

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Response to HelpImSurrounded (Original post)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 12:45 PM

5. Love the new machines they have in Elkhart County Indiana.

The poll worker looks you up by name and prints off your ballot, which has a unique bar code in the corner. You insert that into the voting machine and it pulls up all of the races. You select your choices on the touch screen, then when you're done, it spits your ballot back out with all of your choices marked. Then you walk it over to the counting machine, insert it, and it gives you a "Your vote has been cast!" message, and the ballot drops into a lockbox that is saved in case of a manual recount.

Best part, no wifi connections whatsoever, so there's no ability for them to be hacked.

The scanners work really well too. There was a race last fall that the Republican ended up winning by like, 3 votes (GRRRR). They did a manual recount...and the vote count was identical to the tally the machines had.

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Response to bearsfootball516 (Reply #5)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 12:57 PM

10. How does your vote get to the central tabulation?

If not by modem?

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Response to Grasswire2 (Reply #10)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 01:14 PM

12. Like, how do they all get tabulated at the end of the night?

Each machine has a chip that's removed with the votes on it. It's driven to a central location in Goshen, where all of the chips are inserted in a final counting machine and the final votes are tallied.

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Response to bearsfootball516 (Reply #12)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 01:46 PM

15. election experts are asking that volunteers take a photo at the end of the night...

...where the summary is, by law, posted outside the door of the polling place.

I'll bring info here.

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Response to bearsfootball516 (Reply #12)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 04:41 PM

18. And while that chip is in transit, it can be hacked.

No system is unhackable. But some are better than others. Ideally, ballot transport would be a group endeavor.

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Response to HelpImSurrounded (Reply #18)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 04:58 PM

20. How exactly would that chip be hacked?

You can't hack into something that doesn't have an internet/wifi connection.

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Response to bearsfootball516 (Reply #20)

Fri Oct 16, 2020, 11:05 AM

21. Hacking predates the internet and wifi

Hacking is a term that predates the internet and wifi. Loosely it means "making a system do what it's not intended to do." 90% of hacking is "social engineering" and takes place outside the computer.

When we talk about the Russians hacking the 2016 election, we are not talking about them connecting to voting machines and flipping bits or even the large data dumps they caused. In this case hacking refers to old fashioned psy-ops conducted via micro-targeting in social media. The russians hacked people, not computers.

In the case of the memory circuits used in some voting machines, they simply need to be isolated from other people - e.g. in a courier's car. Once isolated from view, they can be popped into a reader/writer and have their data changed. It would take about 5 minutes and then the "chip" would be delivered to the central location having been altered en route.

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Response to HelpImSurrounded (Reply #21)

Fri Oct 16, 2020, 11:13 AM

22. We actually have safeguards around that.

When it's time to remove the chip from the vote counting machine, both a Democratic and Republican clerk are there to witness it. The chip is dropped into a tamper proof black bag and sealed, and then is driven by the Democratic and Republican clerks to the central location, where they both escort the chip inside and insert it into the central counting machine.

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Response to bearsfootball516 (Reply #22)

Fri Oct 16, 2020, 11:19 AM

23. thanks for this info

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Response to bearsfootball516 (Reply #22)

Fri Oct 16, 2020, 11:50 AM

25. Of course you do

As I said, transport should be a group endeavor. Humans are both the weakest link in security and the best defense to security gaps.

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Response to bearsfootball516 (Reply #5)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 01:21 PM

14. The code for the ballot design is uploaded with memory sticks which can contain executable code.

That is but one of the many ways these machines are hackable.

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Response to HelpImSurrounded (Original post)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 12:45 PM

6. My NoVa county has had them for awhile. No detachable id part though.

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Response to HelpImSurrounded (Original post)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 01:18 PM

13. They're probably Ballot Marking Devices (BMDs) which are devious machines

Last edited Fri Oct 16, 2020, 01:15 PM - Edit history (1)

designed to give the appearance of a paper ballot when it is actually just printing out code (either bar code or QR) which is nontransparent and does not guarantee that your vote will be counted as cast since the scanner will read the code and not whatever marking you made. These are no better than the paperless DREs, and in some ways are worse since they give people a false sense of security.

Some good info. here:
https://medium.com/jennycohn1/what-is-the-latest-threat-to-democracy-ballot-marking-devices-a-k-a-electronic-pencils-16bb44917edd

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Response to diva77 (Reply #13)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 01:54 PM

16. yes, Jenny Cohn is the expert on election security matters.

Her hair has been on fire for four years now.

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Response to diva77 (Reply #13)

Thu Oct 15, 2020, 04:43 PM

19. True about the false sense of security...


...and there is still a lot to do but given where we were, just being able to pull out paper ballots and tally them against the machine is a vital step in the right direction.

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Response to HelpImSurrounded (Reply #19)

Fri Oct 16, 2020, 01:19 PM

30. The best you can do with this scenario is to check your ballot carefully after the printout

emerges - make sure all the races are present and that the printed version displays your correct vote. Then if there is ever a "recount," demand that it be done by hand rather than just rerunning the paper thru a scanner -which will unfortunately only read the bar or QR code rather than the printed part. Spread the word widely!!

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Response to diva77 (Reply #30)

Fri Oct 16, 2020, 01:23 PM

31. Will do!

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Response to HelpImSurrounded (Reply #31)

Fri Oct 16, 2020, 01:29 PM

32. check out this thread with link to current lawsuit regarding BMDs

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Response to diva77 (Reply #13)

Fri Oct 16, 2020, 11:22 AM

24. working link

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Response to Celerity (Reply #24)

Fri Oct 16, 2020, 01:16 PM

28. Thanks, Celerity! I fixed it.

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Response to diva77 (Reply #28)

Fri Oct 16, 2020, 01:19 PM

29. yw

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Response to HelpImSurrounded (Original post)

Fri Oct 16, 2020, 11:52 AM

26. My voting machine printed out a paper copy with

everyone I voted for and a QR code on it. Not sure what the code is for. My paper ballot was recorded as the 108th ballot at the location where I voted.

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Response to HelpImSurrounded (Original post)

Fri Oct 16, 2020, 11:54 AM

27. We had machines in 2016..

not all of them were working on Election Day. Since 2017, we have had paper ballots that we scan into a machine

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